Permanent Secretary calls with Rural Support

Permanent Secretary, Dr Denis McMahon visiting the Rural Support stand at Balmoral Show
Permanent Secretary, Dr Denis McMahon visiting the Rural Support stand at Balmoral Show

Rural Support was pleased to welcome the recently appointed DAERA Permanent Secretary, Dr Denis McMahon, to its stand at this year’s Balmoral Show. 

Jude McCann, chief executive of Rural Support commented: “We were absolutely delighted to have the DAERA Permanent Secretary visit our stand at this year’s Balmoral Show.

“It has been an extremely difficult time for farmers and members of the farm family. 

“Many farmers are still recovering from an extremely challenging winter which saw prolonged wet weather, multiple storms, farmers unable to put animals out to pasture and facing limited fodder to feed livestock. 

“It was a great opportunity for Rural Support to highlight the issues and causes of stress which are being presented to our staff, volunteers and mentors whether that be through our helpline, face to face support, mentoring or at agricultural events and shows. 

“It also provided an opportunity to discuss and promote the support which the charity offers whether that be a listening ear, on farm business mentoring, face to face support, signposting or guidance around social farming.”

Dr McMahon was also on hand to help promote and back Rural Support’s updated freephone helpline number – 0800 138 1678.  The charity updated its helpline number to a freephone number in April of this year. 

Having a freephone number means the services of the charity are easily accessible to all in the farming and rural community, as it eliminates any potential concerns about the cost of the call. 

Dr McMahon commented: “During my visit with Rural Support at Balmoral Show, I was impressed with the range of services that they offer to the farming and rural community of Northern Ireland. 

“These services provide confidential support to those dealing with financial pressures as well as physical and mental health concerns. I encourage those who could benefit from speaking to Rural Support to use their Freephone helpline number.”

Mr McCann stated: “We at Rural Support would like to thank Dr Denis McMahon for taking the time to visit our stand and we wish him every success for the future in his role as DAERA Permanent Secretary.”

If you or someone you know could benefit from speaking to Rural Support please telephone the freephone helpline – 0800 138 1678. 

The helpline is available from 9am-9pm, Monday to Friday (voicemail and support options available at all other times.  Freephone from all UK landlines and mobiles). 

For further information about Rural Support please visit: or follow us on Twitter: @RuralSupport